Skip to main content

hey ho hi hey!

I remember Phil saying that he was working on songs for a musical of 'The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe'..... someone else mentioned it recently and I was just wondering if anyone knew anything more about it?

Is there gonna be a soundtrack?

how many songs?

blah blah, all the usual stuff! Where is it on?

Cheers big ears!

Original Post

Replies sorted oldest to newest

'Tis the other way around, Lozzemelad. Phil's done the lyrics - music is by a guy named Ian McDonald, who has worked for various state theatre companies here for ages.

Not a musical as such, but a big show with eight original songs.

Soundtrack recording - I doubt it. Eight songs wouldn't make much of an album, but I guess you could add some underscoring and incidental music as well. The other thing is that cast recordings don't happen here as a general rule, though in recent years some producers have taken live recordings through the sound desk and polished them up for commercial release. They tend not to do fabulously well (not much of a market) so often they don't bother.

But, you know, never say never. It would be a shame for something new and original (and Australian!) not to be recorded.
Hey Judd Finn- yes went to the opening, some nice freebee tickets (thanx!) was even happy to pay as I really liked the books.
At best it's good, at worst it's dissapointing bordering on cheap. Think they rushed it out to fast as the vocals are not great. A few people complaining afterwards. Most of those people would of been given free tickets so they shouldn't whinge too much.
Only seen two reviews and neither were good. The main one from The Age by Jim Murphy- "Mythical, Magical, Puppetry". It was in todays AGE so it should be on their website.
But so far two thumbs down. It doesn't deserve a major canning but hell my tickets were freebies so I can't really complain. .. I just left feeling it was average at best.
Will paste some of the review if I can find it.
Originally posted by gryphon:
[qb]Yeah Judd Finn I saw that Australian one just after I posted. It's probably the best review of the production but tas you pointed out they say Phil's lyrics are "cliched" but the production, especially the puppets get some positive feedback. I thought the Lion was great by the way.
Cool ' I would very much like to see this show....I hope it comes to Russia!!

I'm sure it would be appreciated here!!!
Maybe the films will make it here! Smiler

Maybe these reviewers only like Gilbert and Sullivan!!! Smiler ) Wink

Mad I would like to meet this critic that cans Mr Judd's work!! I'm sure he would change his point of view.....very quickly!!! Big Grin

Pa Kah Smiler ) RazDaz Smiler

PS Merry is Russian Xmas Jan 7
OK, I have seen it myself now, and I call my review

Did anyone pray for giant shoes?

Okely dokely!

Let�s get this whole lyric thing out of the way first. Honest and for true, I tried very hard to be completely unbiased when I saw it and I can�t see what all the fuss is about. I went with someone who is not into Judd/Enz at all, so nothing invested there. He couldn�t understand the negative comments either. The lyrics are simple without being condescending and are understandable for kids. This is not the place for profound, sophisticated, Sondheimlich manouvres. Trite? No. The worst thing I could say is that on (only) two or three occasions the rhymes were a little obvious or predictable. But, again, children are the target audience so big woop. The lyrics were appropriate, yes, clever, and in some cases really quite lovely. They also fit the style of the book/script. Different to Lewis� style, sure, but not jarringly so, and not different to the script which is the main thing.

Clich�d? Uhm, the whole show is about the battle between good and evil and the power of faith in the face of adversity. And redemption, in Edmund�s case. Those are the biggest frickin� clich�s in the history of the world. And the lyrics tell that story. They have to. They tell a �clich�d� story, but not in a clich�d way. (Interesting � the battle between good and evil in Lord of the Rings get to be �archetypal� and LWW gets to be �clich�d�. Hmmm.)

The songs, I found, didn�t hold up the action. At worst, I did find that they sometimes repeated information that had come before or came after in the script. For this reason (and others) the script needed a visit from the Blue Pencil Fairy anyway. Some overall structural things could be tweaked. Aspects of Nadia Tass� direction could have been tighter (there was a bit of pointless wandering) and things like the acrobat girlie dangling above the stage after the big battle, doing nothing much, while nothing happened on stage were far more guilty of slowing the flow of the show than any song.

The sound design was terrible. The sound designer�s background is in rock concerts and lawdy, it showed. LOUD, CONSTANTLY LOUD! A little light and shade needed in the sound design, IMHO.

The �children� in the cast were great. When allowed to sing, they were fantastic. (The Lucy/Susan duet at Aslan�s death was really pretty.) When directed to climb stairs, run and jump around the stage and sing at the same time, singing turned to shouting.

Puppets just wonderful, and the puppeteers have now warmed into their roles. Any technical problems that were there opening night have been ironed out. Aslan�s back end is looking just fine, and no-one looked �disabled�. A lot of blank/dark spots in the set design that sometimes make the stage look a little bare, but it soon becomes obvious that�s a design decision so that puppeteers can blend in and not be seen. Works really well, and a worthwhile trade off.

The only thing I really, really couldn�t stand was Amanda Muggleton as the White Witch. I wanted to kill her with a brick. Or, better yet, one of her big giant shoes. What had she come as? A cross between Maria Callas and Norma Desmond doing an atrocious, booming accent that was some m�lange of Russian/Greek/Transylvanian/Texan. OK, nuance out the wazoo may be lost on children but this was one-dimensional even for kids. How she ever reinvented herself from some old slapper who�d get her gear off at the drop of a hat to a respected dramatic actress, I�ll never know.

Very pleasing was the crowd. Lots of kids and very respectable numbers for a midweek audience in a house that size. Little attention spans didn�t just hold out but were completely into it, and there was much whoopin� and a-hollerin� at the curtain call.

Critics? Pah! They gave Les Miserables a pounding when it opened and it�s still running 17 years later. Begone, you have no power here!
Hairy Canary,

I'd honestly have to hold up that review of yours as the best review I've seen of a Frenz-related effort (equal tie with Lozza's Enz DVD review, to be honest, but DIFFERENT STYLES, so a dead heat nonetheless...)

Thankyou for putting that out there for us fans too far from the "action", to appreciate... and maybe you'll drag a few Victorian frenz in to see the show for themselves...

Wish I was one of them, I say Smiler

Hairy glad it's improved. Oddly enough the night I went the sound seemed low, not loud, then again it might be different sound people.
It was about 50/50- half adults half little adults. I think the adults enjoyed it more, which is good- think there are some serious adult flashbacks to when "they" read the books (:
Amanda Muggleton is a strange person to get
some UK readers may remember her from her Chrissie Latham days from the Prisoner (Cellblock H) TV show. She was always the person I wanted to "hit with a brick" (thanks H.C.) on that show too....
I haven't seen any newspaper adds over the last few days but I think it finishes it's run in a week or so.
The one question I do have, is where are all the Melbourne Phil Judd fans- only Hairy Canary's review . Surely some other fans did see this, be good to have some other feedback.? Anyone??????
Is the LWW meant to be playing in other States?
Originally posted by gryphon:
[qb]Oddly enough the night I went the sound seemed low, not loud, then again it might be different sound people.[/qb]
Ooooh, my guess is that the Sound Department were told "it's a little low, bump the levels up" and did so, knee jerk style. There's more to it that just volume though. It's a hard thing to explain, but musicals can be strange animals and something like this with a band, body mics and pre records is a big juggling act that requires expertise - and as far as I'm concerned, there's really only one company in the country that gets it right. This wasn't them.

Guess you've just missed the newspaper ads Wink . They are definitely doing TV ads though. As far as I know it's still closing on either the 1st or the 8th of February as planned.

It's scheduled to play Perth, Adelaide and Canberra, which I guess would take them through until about May.

Gosh, it's hard work being a shill. Big Grin

Did anyone notice the Sunday Age gave it 4 1/2 stars out of 5? Sorry, couldn't resist that one. Razzer
Saw an advert today, think it said "last 20,000" tickets available. Which probably means , 2 weeks left in Melbourne??? At least it's playing all those other areas and should of improved a bit by the time it gets to those places. Am assuming they will add Sydney??
I keep seeing far more mentions of Snow White etc the press seems really limited for the show.
They could have some fantastic cast shots with the Lion but there doesn't seem to be all that much, apart from the odd review.
Great about The Age review, think they used a line from that in todays Age advert for the show.
Broadway beckons for Lion, Witch, Wardrobe and Hobbit
John Mangan, The Age, 16 Jan 2003

The phones are ringing, the lawyers are talking, and, if all goes according to plan, the Australian productions of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and The Hobbit could be bound for Broadway, with the backing of Hollywood titan, Harvey Weinstein.

Bill May, the co-producer of the Australian shows, says representatives from the theatrical division of Weinstein's company, Miramax, were at the opening night of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe on New Year's Eve at the State Theatre, where it is still playing. They loved the show and its high-tech puppetry.

"Weinstein is blown away with what we've done," says May, who co-produced the shows with Malcolm C. Cooke. "So now we have an international marketing arm. He knows how to take a specialty production and get it to the masses.

"Our dream is to show the world the talent that is here in Australia.

"It's exciting to see people coming here from overseas and saying, 'Wow, that's fantastic!' because our form of theatre, with that puppetry, is happening nowhere else in the world."

Miramax were in on the ground floor with The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, being a major investor in May and Cookes' production.

And with Tolkien fever running hot, The Hobbit could open in the United States within 18 months, which is considered the minimum time needed to book a large-scale theatrical tour. "Because of the success of the Lord of the Rings films, getting The Hobbit onstage is very appealing," says May.

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is the fifth best-selling book in the world over the years," he adds.

Miramax's theatre division has already produced the Broadway smash, The Producers. The movie side of the business was responsible for such films as Gangs of New York, The English Patient and Pulp Fiction.
Does anyone know where Judd's lyrics to The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe songs might be posted?

I emailed the stage show's website several weeks back and got no response.

As far as fantasy writing goes,the Narnia Chronicles are more dear to my heart than The Lord of the Rings. I'm very curious to see what parts of the Wardrobe story his songs narrate and how his lyrics interpret the story in general.

I still can't get over that Judd helped write lyrics for such a project. It's such a strange bit of synchronicity (in my little universe anyhow). Judd writing songs for The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe--how perfect! If only he had gotten to write the music, too.

-Electric Elf
I just got a response from someone representing the production and found out that Judd's lyrics for the show are not posted anywhere on the Internet right now, but they may be in the future.

I was also told that Judd is currently revising some of the lyrics for the 2nd season of the show and rights are presently being negotiated in hopes of bringing the production to the U.S.

Oh thanks "Hairy" actually meant Frenz list reviews from the members. I tend to prefer fan reviews,far more "real", plus I think websites
around shows tend to only put up the "hype hype" reviews where fans tend to be more detailed and honest.
At least it has been on, just hadn't seen a mention here which I thought was kind of odd.
Thanks though, appreciated.

Add Reply

    All times London, UK.

    ©1998-Eternity, All post content is the copyrighted work of the person who wrote it. Please don't copy, reproduce, or publish anything you see written here without the author's permission.
Link copied to your clipboard.